2014 NFL Mock Draft: All Seven Rounds for the Dallas Cowboys 2.0
In between chasing my 2-year-old son around, I managed to catch some of the Seattle Seahawks and San Francisco 49ers game on Sunday; one of the biggest things I took away from that game is just how dominant those two defensive fronts are.
People who know football, and have been around the sport can attest to the saying that it comes down to “winning in the trenches.” In layman’s terms that pretty much means is that if your line can beat their line, whether on offense or defense, then you have a pretty good chance of winning that football game.
The Cowboys finished the 2013 season ranked No. 32 in total yards (6,645), No. 32 in yards per game (415.3), No. 30 in passing yards (4589), No. 30 in passing yards per game (286.8), No. 27 in rushing yards (2056), No. 27 in rushing yards per game (128.5), No. 26 in points (432), No. 26 in points per game (27.0), and No. 10 in takeaways with 15 interceptions and 12 fumbles.
It’s very obvious that the Cowboys have a lot of work to do to correct their downfalls, and it all begins with the 2014 NFL Draft. I say that it all begins with the Draft because as you have seen in the past, the really successful teams draft and develop their own talent and supplement their roster through free agent acquisitions.
Unfortunately, the Cowboys will be approximately $25 million over the cap so the chances of them actually going out and landing some big time help in free agency is slim; at least it is right now.
Ultimately the Cowboys will have to make some tough decisions regarding their roster and the future of some of their veteran players, but we’ll cross that bridge when we get there.
For right now, let’s focus on the draft and see what the Cowboys could do to help get over the 8-8 hump on which they have been the past three seasons. So, without further ado here’s my Cowboys 2014 Mock NFL Draft 2.0
Here’s the link to my Cowboys 2014 Mock NFL Draft 1.0, in case you want to check it out. I’d appreciate it if you did.
Round 1, (17th overall) Cyril Richardson
|Class:||RS Senior||40 time:||5.27|
I believe Richardson is the best guard prospect in this draft and is very deserving of the 17th overall pick. Now, I know that the Cowboys need help along the defensive front, but they also need a long-term solution at guard.
You cannot, in your right mind, tell me that you’re happy with Mackenzy Bernadeau allowing four sacks and 17 quarterback hurries or Ronald Leary’s five sacks and 27 quarterback hurries allowed, especially when your 32-year-old quarterback is coming off of his second back surgery in less than a year.
Round 2, (48th overall) Aaron Donald
When I say I love this kid; I mean it. His stock has been steadily rising since the end of the college football season. Right now he’s projected to be a mid second round pick, but I wouldn’t be surprised if he sneaks into the late first round by the time the Combine is over.
Many people who have seen Donald play say he reminds them of former Cowboys defensive tackle La’Roi Glover.
Round 3, (79th overall) Dion Bailey
|Class:||RS Junior||40 time:||4.5|
Despite moving from linebacker to safety, Bailey, a three-year starter for the Trojans, made a lot of plays on defense in 2013. He finished the season with 58 tackles, 5 interceptions, 4.5 tackles for loss and six passes broken up. He possesses good instincts and speed, but what I like the most about this young man is that he’s a very good pass-defender.
When Monte Kiffin was his defensive coordinator with the Trojans, Bailey played Will linebacker and racked up 80 tackles, eight tackles for a loss, four interceptions and five passes broken up.
I guess that if playing free safety for the Cowboys doesn’t work out he can always bulk up and play linebacker.
Round 4, (110th overall) Billy Turner
|Position:||OT||School:||North Dakota State|
In about the span of a week, Turner’s stock has gone from a late-round prospect to a middle of the pack prospect.
He has quick feet, good upper and lower body strength and packs a mean punch according to scouts that have seen him practice at the Senior Bowl. He's raw, but I believe that with a little coaching, this kid could easily be Doug Free’s replacement on the right side of the offensive line.
Round 5, (147th overall) Caleb Lavey
Lavey could be a nice value pick this late in the Draft, much like DeVonte Holloman was last season. In 2013, Lavey recorded 93 tackles, 12.5 tackles for loss, four interceptions, three passes broken up, three forced fumbles, and 2.5 sacks.
Lavey is a smart player who reads and reacts quickly and attacks on running plays. He plays aggressively, but rarely made mental mistakes. He’s not the most polished athlete, but he certainly looks the part of the middle linebacker in the 4-3 defense.
Round 7 (207th overall) Ethan Westbrooks
|Position:||DE||School:||West Texas A&M|
When you register 100 tackles, 45.5 tackles for loss, 24.5 sacks, 29 quarterback hurries and four forced fumbles over the span of two seasons and then get named Defensive Player of the Game at the East and West Shrine Game, scouts are going to pay attention.
Westbrooks has a very quick first step and has the size to be an effective pass rusher at the NFL level. Coupled with Rod Marinelli, he could go a long way in helping the Cowboys fix their disastrous pass rush.
Round 7 (210th overall) Jay Bromley
Bromley put up some pretty big numbers for the Orange in 2013. In fact, he finished the season leading the NCAA in yards for loss and only one sack behind Aaron Donald. He has a quick first step and is very disruptive at the point of attack, if the Cowboys somehow land him and Donald it could definitely go a long way toward fixing the interior of the defensive line.
Round 7, (215th overall) Jeremy Butler
Butler finished his 2013 season with 90 catches for 1203 yards and 10 touchdowns. I like that he can win battles when the ball is in the air and has really good hands, He’s an athletic receiver, but won’t burn anyone in a footrace and projects to be more of a possession receiver at the next level. The Cowboys are in need of a solid slot receiver, and Butler could be that guy.